Red Sox Rumors: Boston called Oakland A’s about Khris Davis
By Sean Penney
The Boston Red Sox reportedly called the Oakland A’s to inquire about outfielder/designated hitter Khris Davis but were told he’s unavailable.
Cross another potential trade target for the Boston Red Sox off the list.
The San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser reports that the Red Sox were among the several teams to reach out to the Oakland A’s about Khris Davis, only to be told that the 29-year old slugger is unavailable.
After Oakland traded away Ryon Healy to the Seattle Mariners in November to free up the designated hitter role for the defensively challenged Davis, the A’s are no longer interested in parting with their top power hitter.
Davis would have been an enticing option for the Red Sox to consider at DH if the rebuilding A’s had been open to moving him. He’s topped 40 home runs and 100 RBI in each of the last two seasons, setting career-highs with 43 and 110 this year to go along with a .864 OPS that ranked 18th in the American League. He’s topped a .500 slugging percentage in each of the last three seasons. Only Eduardo Nunez did that for the Red Sox this year and it came in a mere 38 games.
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Despite the impressive power production, Davis often goes overlooked in the discussion of the top trade targets. Perhaps that’s because he’s languishing away on a poor Oakland squad. His -13 defensive runs saved highlights his liability in the field, which makes him best suited for DH duties and eliminates essentially half of the potential suitors.
He’s also a strikeout machine who whiffed 195 times this year. His batting average isn’t all that appealing, yet he’s been remarkably consistent by posting a .247 average in each of the last three seasons. His career-high 73 walks boosted his OBP to a respectable .336 this season.
Davis is projected by MLB Trade Rumors to earn $11.1 million in his second year of arbitration and remains under team control until 2020. That makes him a bargain compared to the free agent options capable of matching his power. Of course, that’s also a factor in why Oakland is intent on keeping him.
Next: Free agents Red Sox should avoid
Few players are truly unavailable and for the right price, the A’s could be talked into parting with Davis. However, it’s not a price the Red Sox should be willing to pay. Their farm system lacks the chips to entice the A’s without depleting a crop of prospects that already is considered nearly barren. There are more appealing options potentially out there if the Red Sox were intent on going that route, while their financial flexibility allows them to chase a free agent bat and keep their farm system intact.